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14th AUGUST 1997


The cars involved in the crash (Mr & Mrs Thomas' vehicle at rear)   David Thomas (above). His wife Jennie (right) remains in hospital.


THE community of Tycroes was in shock this week following the death of a “popular and pleasant” pensioner in a head-on-car crash on the outskirts of Llandybie on Friday afternoon.

David Islwyn Thomas, 82, of 139 Teglan Park, died at Morriston Hospital, following the accident near the entrance to the former opencast site in Blaenau Road at 4.30pm.

His wife Jennie, 83, a passenger in the Fiesta car, was in a poorly condition at Morriston Hospital on Tuesday.

The driver of the other car, Steve Smith, 40, from Llandybie, underwent surgery for leg injuries.

All three were trapped in their vehicles and had to be released by officers from the local fire brigade.

Locals described Mr Thomas as a popular and pleasant gentleman who was always ready to help anyone in need.

He was a past chairman of the local pensioners group; a member of the village hall committee; and until a few years ago was a regular driver and distributor of ”meals on wheels.”

County Councillor Dennis Pugh, who represents the area on Carmarthenshire County Council, said Mr Thomas would be sadly missed by the whole community.

“He was a very dear gentleman at all times,” he added. “He was friendly and sociable ready to help with local causes.

In his younger days, Mr Thomas, a native of Cwmfferws, Tycroes, was a miner at both Saron and Wernos collieries.

But in the 1920's, he won a scholarship to the Guildhall School of Music in London, where he and his wife, Jennie, who was brought up in Ammanford, kept a business for may years.

Mr Thomas had a fine baritone voice and as an operatic singer sung at Covent Garden. In the 1940's, he won the baritone solo at a National Eisteddfod in North Wales.

Mr and Mrs Thomas have one daughter, Margaret, living in London. One of seven children, Mr Thomas, has a surviving brother and sister – John Thomas, living in Old Road, Ammanford, and Dilys, living in Gloucester.





















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